Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Improve the last warm-up pitch before the inning

We’ve all seen it a thousand times … the catcher yells “Comin’ down!” before the last warm-up pitch by the pitcher.  At the higher levels, the catcher just puts his throwing arm out to the side and... 

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Three ways to quicken your transitions from catching to throwing

The photo on the right is my son about to throw a ball to a teammate in this year’s SE Pennsylvania 10u Ripken State Tournament Skills Night.  The event they are participating in was the Around-the-horn competition.  The... 

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The importance of being aggressive early at the plate

Be aggressive early! As all of my readers know, baseball is a very cerebral game.  The difference between winning and losing & succeeding and failing at the game often is more about what is going on between the ears and not... 

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The shortstop’s priority when holding runners on

There are a boatload of little things that shortstops should do in order to effectively hold runners on at second base.  However, one stands out as the top priority and that involves getting the runner (and third base coach!)... 

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Sometimes you have to pack the parachutes

I recently heard an inspiring true story from a friend/coach.   It goes like this … Captain Charlie Plumb was a fighter pilot in the 60’s during the Vietnam War.  While on a mission, his jet was shot down.  He was... 

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Good outfield jumps are mental

One of the things I always stressed to my players, especially the outfielders, is that on every foul ball, I should see all seven fielders behind the pitcher move in the direction of the foul ball.  For example, if the batter... 

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Happy July 4th week

Hi everyone! No posts this week.  I hope you and your families have a relaxing and fun 4th of July week!   Next post will be Monday.  Good luck if you are playing this week!   Coach McCreary Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailPrint Read More →

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If you know a young player, make him watch this

Young American kids typically wear $80 spikes.  They use $300+ mako bats.  They play on nice fields and they carry baseball bags filled with 20 pounds of other gear.  Some are the best players in their area.  They have dreams... 

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How to improve your pitching machine

I’m not a gigantic fan of pitching machines mainly because they are so unrealistic to how a ball is going to be pitched to a batter.  Here is a picture that shows the obvious problem.   No pitch will ever shoot out... 

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Base running – A yard makes a big difference

If you have been a reader of this site then you probably know the story of why I call it Baseball By The Yard.  If you don’t, watch the video on my Home Page that explains the story and the significance. The other day I... 

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How to rub up a baseball

As a former pitcher, it bothers me every time a sparkling white, brand new baseball is thrown into a game.  If the game balls are my team’s responsibility then they will always be rubbed up.  It’s just habit. Watch... 

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How to autograph a baseball

I’m a stickler for doing things right when it comes to the game of baseball.  Right down to how to autograph a baseball. In today’s video tip, I show the wrong way and the right way to do it.  If you are going to... 

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Pitchers – warm up in the same direction

Warm up in the same direction! As a pitcher, I don’t think I warmed up in a real bullpen until I got to high school.  And even then I think only one or two fields had them.  Most of the time a catcher and I would find... 

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Knob to the ball v Hands inside the ball – What’s the difference?

I’ve said numerous times on my site that one size never fits all when it comes to teaching baseball.  Everyone plays and learns differently and therefore requires unique methods of instruction.  This is true right down... 

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Proper helmet throwing

I’m a HUGE Domingo Ayala fan.  In my opinion, this is his best work yet.  Check out all his other videos HERE.  Enjoy!   Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailPrint Read More →

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Slumps and the common cold

Treat a slump like you would a cold Sooner or later, everyone will catch a cold just like every batter will find himself in a rut or a slump.  The two are very similar because no matter what you do, you are going to have both... 

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Be on second base!

Challenge yourself to be on 2nd base on every fly ball! You see it all the time in the big leagues on TV.  A player hits a pop-up, slams the bat down, and runs about 60% to first base.  Most of the time, the fielder catches... 

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Pitchers and the Spotlight Effect

If you ever took a psychology course then you probably know that there are many things that can impact how we perceive the world around us.  Quite often our perceptions are flawed as a result.  Concepts like confirmation bias,... 

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Within three pitches

Tired of these games? Successful pitching at any level is not rocket science.  Get ahead and force them to put the ball into play.   There are very few situations in the game where a strikeout is necessary.  2nd and 3rd and... 

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The good and bad of golf during baseball season

There have been several times where I have watched a batter for the first time during a hitting lesson and asked the player, “How long have you played golf?”  The response has always started with a look that said... 

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Accelerate the barrel through the zone

Accelerate the barrel and attack the baseball! One of the hundreds of baseball sayings my dad passed on to me growing up was, “The ball will not jump off the bat by itself.  You have to make it jump off your bat.”... 

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Strikeouts are killing baseball

No worries. Apparently nobody cares anymore. When I was in the Twins organization, I had a teammate who was a power hitter who struck out a lot.  Another teammate was kidding him about his strikeout totals and the power hitter... 

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Baseball has a problem

A friend sent this photo from a game he was watching yesterday.  Yes, “TJ” stands for “Tommy John” surgery.  And this is only one team at one level. Folks, there are serious problems in the game of baseball.... 

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Why don’t more catchers drop a knee?

Yadier Molina takes a knee Being a catcher has to be the most physically demanding job on a baseball field.  Heck, my knees hurt just warming up a pitcher for a few throws.  I can’t imagine squatting down day in and day... 

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Cardinal sins of base running

If you have watched MLB highlights over the past few days then you probably have seen this play from Yadier Molina. The base runner who went to third on the walk broke three (yes, a MLB player committed THREE!!!!) cardinal sins... 

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10 reasons to front-toss

Sitting or standing, underhand or overhand, front-toss is tough to beat. There are several ways to practice hitting.  Live BP and hitting off a tee are popular ones.  All have value but in my opinion and all things considered,... 

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Beating a slow pitcher with your feet

Ask any Major Leaguer who they would rather face – a hard throwing guy bringing it 93mph or a soft throwing guy who throws anywhere from 75-86 mph – and I bet well over 85% of them will say “bring on the hard... 

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Snap your swings like a boxer

Today’s video tip involves a phrase I have been using with my son recently in order to increase his bat speed.  The phrase is “snap your swings.”  As you will see, it is related to the sport of boxing. Share... 

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What are your hitting cues?

Know your cues and adjust them as needed Every hitter has a unique set of strengths and weaknesses.  Some are great at pulling the ball but not so great at staying back and going the other way.  Others are just the opposite.... 

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Happy Easter

Have a great holiday everyone!  Good luck if you are playing this weekend!  Family is going on vacation so the next post will be Tuesday! Enjoy the break! Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailPrint Read More →

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Brandon Phillips’ secret weapons

Phillips’ training paddle The past few winters I’ve had the pleasure of working with a major league scout/coach who is very high up in the Cincinnati Reds organization.  On the last clinic day before he had to leave... 

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The (un)holy alliance between pitchers and catchers (Part 2)

A few months ago I shared a photo that was circulating on social media which appeared to show a “dark substance” on the shin guard of a Major League catcher.  I implied that it was pine tar to help the pitcher.  I’m... 

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If you can’t play catch, you can’t play baseball

Not sure when this basic skill became so hard The last part of the Bible is referred to as “The Last Days” and lists seven prophecies that some claim will predict and lead us towards the end of the world.  If my... 

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Coaches, be in Code Yellow off the field too

Always be in Yellow In my last post, I wrote about the topic of mindset and presented four color codes that should guide the thinking of players. These codes were based on the work of Colonel Jeff Cooper as described. Once again,... 

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Color Coded Mindsets For Baseball

If you have been in the Marines or are in the gun world, you probably have heard of Colonel Jeff Cooper.  Cooper was considered to be one of the world’s top experts on the use and history of small arms (handguns). Among... 

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Confronting bad body language

A player’s bad body language on a field is one of my pet peeves.  Like many coaches, I despise it and do not tolerate it on my teams.  That being said, I also do not jump down a player’s throat when I see it the... 

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Body language matters

A few days ago, the following video clip of a 2016 Geno Auriemma, head coach of the powerhouse UConn women basketball team, press conference surfaced again and has gone virus through social media.  If you have a young player... 

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Just in time learning for new coaches

Get out there and learn as you go! Entering the coaching world for the first time can be pretty stressful.  You realize very quickly that being in charge of a team is very different from only having to worry about your own performance... 

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Simulated indoor game

Where I am in Pennsylvania, snow blankets the ground and the temperatures are still in the 30-40 degree range.  Not great baseball weather to say the least.  Scrimmages and games are cancelled and players have to make the trek... 

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Just “tie your shoes”

“Tie your shoes” This is the last post in a series of recent posts on the importance of creating a routine as a hitter.  The previous posts on the subject are linked here: What is your hitting routine? What are YOUR... 

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Why do players choke?

Don’t think. Just ride. Today’s post is in a series of posts dedicated to hitters who can benefit from a routine prior to their at-bats.  The prior three posts related to this topic are linked below.  The final one... 

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A hitter’s routine and Muscle Memory

Two of last week’s posts centered around the importance of hitters developing a personalized routine to prepare for at-bats.  If you did not get a chance to see them, you can click on their titles below. What is your hitting... 

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Free video with Four-Week Guide for pitchers ends tonight!

Plus a FREE BONUS video on Change-ups! Happy Friday! The weather where I am in Pennsylvania looks horrible for the next 10 days or so which obviously makes it tough to develop your players, especially pitchers. My Four-week guide... 

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What are YOUR players doing on deck?

The photo to the right was forwarded to me by a good friend who said it was making the rounds on social media.  As you can see, a total of four hitters are currently in their hitting routine.  To see this many hitters involved... 

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What is your hitting routine?

Two circles with the bat. Deep breathe. Bring it! Take a pitch. Step out. Adjust the left batting glove. Adjust the right batting glove. Tap the right foot with the bat. Tap the left foot with the bat. Step into the box and dig... 

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FELT goals for baseball success

I hate this game. I hate this game. I hate this game. Baseball is quite possibly the most confidence and esteem crushing sport in existence.  No other sports punishes players for doing everything right.  A batter perfectly approaches... 

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A tip to keep the catcher back on sac bunts

Today’s video tip is a higher level one for base runners. It involves a situation where the batter poorly bunts a pitch just in front of home plate. Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailPrint Read More →

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Make a deposit every game

Baseball wealth comes from a lot of small deposits over time Go to any book store and you will see tons of books related to financial success.  Each one claims to have the secret formula to reaching your financial dreams.  I’m... 

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Parents and playing time

Dude, if you want to stay in games you have to get your mom to talk to Coach Madden. Ask a coach about dealing with parents and you are likely to get several eye-rolls and a few choice words.  I’m not sure who said it but the... 

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A small tip for faster sprints

One big problem a lot of young sprinters have is that they cannot get out of their own way. They never allow their body to function at 100% because they use poor running skills that often lead to too much tension. Loosen up that... 

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